At Wonderful Machine, we’re constantly looking for new ways to customize our services to meet the needs of photographers. One of the truisms of promotions of any kind is that before you do any marketing, you want to make sure your branding is resolved. While our photo editors do lots of full-blown web edits, we sometimes find that a photographer’s website has a good basic edit, but it just needs some fine-tuning to make it really “sing.” We designed our new Website Tune-Up service to do just that.
I recently had the opportunity to complete a website tune-up for Tucson, Arizona-based product and still-life photographer Ben Sisco. Just as a car tune-up varies based on specific needs, the approach to each website tune-up will differ based on the marketing goals and website issues. For this reason, an initial consultation to discuss the website and provide feedback to the photographer is a critical part of the process. For Ben, the main issue we had to address was adding an overview edit to function as an introduction to the portfolio. We also considered reworking the navigation to tease apart the specialty galleries and client galleries, and to flesh out an About page.
Once we outlined clear objectives, the next step was to get to work on the overview page edit and outline a new potential navigation for Ben’s site. An overview edit should function as sort of a mini portfolio that has a coherent flow to it, rather than a random collection of “greatest hits.” With the overview, you want to make a strong statement about your visual style and show off a range of your capabilities in a way that feels consistent. After sharing an initial edit with Ben, we corresponded about some changes that included adding some of his favorite images and we adjusted the overall edit using color as a guide to the sequencing.
My main goals going into the website tune-up were to create a more cohesive site and a landing page. Additionally, I gave Honore my preferences for the landing page image selections. She also helped with the navigation edit, about and contact page designs, and additional footer information.
After the overview gallery edit was complete, Ben reworked the navigation to separate the specialty galleries from the projects as we had discussed in our initial strategy meeting. We completed the tune-up with a revision to the About page and the addition of a footer to the website. Overall, it was a quick and productive process that resulted in an updated navigational structure that showcased some client-specific work and the addition of an overview landing page to give an easy introduction to Ben’s portfolio.
Ben was satisfied with the changes, stating:
The whole process went smoothly. After working with Honore, I believe that the simplified navigation and the refined landing page showcases a more effective initial presentation of my work.